Fireflies and the Meaning of Life
One of my vivid childhood memories was the delight I felt in watching the fireflies light up the darkness from my Aunt Julia’s front porch in Buffalo, N.Y. We kids would chase after those elusive little bugs with mason jars in hand hoping to catch them and see their bursts of light in the glass. What fun!
Odd isn’t it, but maybe not so strange, that I find myself seven decades later in life smiling with pleasure at the wonder I felt as a six-year-old boy watching the tiny sparks from those lightening bugs. Awesome, too, that our human memories are able to reach that far back in time and recall the seemingly insignificant moments in our lives.
Once a priest, always a priest, my mind leaps to the absolutely unknowable, the mind of God. I was thinking that if our human memories are capable of snatching snippets of memories from early childhood, God can surely do it over eons and eons of time.
I imagine the Master of the Universe, for whom there is no time, as we know it, viewing our brief moments on earth as little sparks of life. Dare I go further and think that God treasures our moments as we kids enjoyed the lightening bugs? Yes, I do believe that for, to me, God has always been just another word for love. And if God cares for all his creation, from the birds of the air to the lilies of the fields and yes, even the memories we felt at the little lightening bugs, we need not angst over the future of our world or the meaning of life.
Happy New Year!